3D Printing, that’s how
3d printing seems to be taking a back seat when it comes to the press but I’ve been watching this for quite a while now. It’s unusual as often jounalists hail any new technology as world-changing only for it to be a little less than that.
It will change the world and faster than we think.
Imagine being able to “print” i.e. manufacture just about anything you want in your own home or office anywhere in the world.
Imagine the new car, a new pair of glasses, toys, medicine, food (yes food), body parts (yes body parts), clothes – it will all be printable.
Raw materials and their distribution will become a key factor (and by the way some of this is bio produced, i.e. made from growing crops!) as will design and copyright protection – open source? How do the designers get paid?
Oh boy are some people going to have to think hard in the very near future.
Me, well I’ll just print myself a new iPhone and call up some buddies, see what they think.
I’ve been working on the content for our workshop event in January and am trying to use real-world examples for this and to find some common themes that would be useful to everyone.
I was just in a conversation about “lock-in” (my term meaning suppliers who design apps in a way to ensure you spend loads along the way and can’t use anyone else) and was asked whether I thought a latest quote from a software supplier was too much as the change seemed quite small.
Now remember I am in the business of software development so I immediately felt I was on both sides of the fence (i.e. uncomfortable!) – first reaction was “yea that’s a bit expensive”, second reaction was “well actually the change is a whole new area of functionality and will deliver a huge amount to the business”.
So you know what conclusion we reached?
It’s not about the cost of providing 178 lines of HTML and ASP code and 3 PNG images and comparing the pounds per line and whether it would be cheaper to go to China.
It’s about the people, relationship, dialogue, trust, value for money and business objectives.
Epilogue: End result was they spoke to the developer about their budgets and by taking some functionality out could reduce the cost a bit – simple, everyone was happy.
Note: It doesn’t always happen that way …!
Cumulus or Stratus?
Wow so much talk of cloud computing these days.
- Start with owning some server hardware in your own offices (own data centre even, if you are lucky)
- Move to rack space rental (you still like to own those servers)
- Move to server rental (maybe you got fed up with them but you still like to know what colour they are?)
- OK now over to the cloud (half a kilogram of power, two feet of storage, and about a dozen bits of functionality would do the trick nicely)
Quite simple really?